Poh Chap Yeap

Poh Chap Yeap
Year of birth: 
Kota Baharu, Malaysia
Country of birth: 
Great Brittain
Working period: 
Year of death: 

Poh Chap Yeap was the son of a Chinese family born in Kota Baharu, Malaysia in 1927. He came to England in 1948 to study law, and his pottery career began in Aarhus, Denmark, in 1961. Here he visited his future parents-in-law. He returned to Britain the following year to study ceramics at Putney Evening Institute and then to the Hammersmith College of Art. In 1967 he was a research student in ceramics at the Royal College of Art. He is a fine thrower and worked in porcelain and stoneware making bowls, dishes and decorative vessels. His work has been exhibited world wide and he has taught at various schools and polytechnics. Until 1986, when he stopped potting, Yeap worked at Ewhurst, Surrey, and now lives in Cranleigh, Surrey (text: Pottery Studio).

Pictures: early portrait (source Studio pots); 'Chinese' vase (source Invaluable.com); bowl (source MAAK London); vase (source MAAK London).

Work of the artist: 

His work consisted of wheel thrown porcelain and stoneware in the Chinese tradition, including some with brushwork decoration, and he very quickly gained a considerable reputation. In fact during his career he was undoubtedly one of the major potters in the UK, if not the world, and was regarded on an equal footing with Leach, Rie and Coper. He became the first living potter to exhibit at the Ashmoleum Museum in Oxford and had many other exhibitions during the 1970's, including ones at the V&A Museum, London as well as in Tokyo, New York, Heidelberg and Faenza.
After the death of his wife in the early 1980's, Yeap began to lose interest in potting and finally stopped in 1986. At the time he did talk of returning to Malaysia but instead moved to a smaller property in Surrey where he remained happily retired until his death in August 2007 (text: bron: studio-pots.com and Tim Hayward).